This slowly-unraveling, exquisitely-detailed novel made the poet Sofia Samatar a World Fantasy Award winner and a Nebula Award finalist. It follows Jevick, a young writer who is obsessed with the fantastical, distant world of Olondria, where his father is a merchant. But when Jevick is called there after he inherits the family business, he becomes haunted by a ghost—and is unwittingly pulled into Olondria’s power struggle. The novel unfolds in waves of A Game of Thrones-level twists, all while its fantastical world-building pulls from South Asian, Middle Eastern and African cultures to offer a welcome departure from Eurocentric fantasy.
The 100 Best Fantasy Books of All Time